Who Should the Yankees Sign? Part Four: Brian McCann

Part Four:

C Brian McCann

Born: February 20, 1984 (Age 29) in Athens, GA

Major League Debut: June 10, 2005 (Age 21)

Teams Played For: Atlanta Braves (2005-2013)

By the Numbers:

2013 numbers: .256/.336/.461/.796, 115 OPS+, 20 HRs, 57 RBIs, 2.2 WAR (102 games)

Career numbers: .277/.350/.473/.823, 117 OPS+, 176 HRs, 661 RBIs, 23.5 WAR

Previous contract: 7 years, $41 million, $5.9 AAV

Projected contract (from FanGraphs): 4 years, $59 million, $14.8 million AAV

Pros- A seven-time All-Star, McCann has been one of the best catchers in the game since his arrival in 2005. The Yankees are desperate for stability behind the plate, as Chris Stewart, Austin Romine and others combined for bottom five production on offense this season. As a left-handed batter, McCann would benefit from moving to Turner Field to Yankee Stadium. He would be a perfect stopgap between now and when one of the kids come up (J.R. Murphy, Gary Sanchez, etc.)

Cons- Giving a catcher a long-term deal is very risky, given the wear and tear of the position. The Twins are learning that, so they’re moving Joe Mauer to first-base next year. Fortunately, McCann isn’t asking for $23 million a year, but he has expressed interest in a $100 million deal. He has had some injuries in the last few years, so he may have to eventually move to first or DH, which could be a problem with guys like A-Rod, Jeter and Teixeira already under contract for a while as age similarly limits their defensive capabilities

Verdict- I’ve been saying for the last year that letting Russell Martin sign with Pittsburgh for peanuts was a very idiotic move that predictably came back to bite them. This leaves them the option of overpaying a choice from a crop of free agent catchers including McCann and Jarrod Saltalamacchia. There is talk that the Rangers are going after McCann hard, so that may drive the price up on him. Still, I think McCann is worth the investment if the Yankees are really serious about contending next year, and he provides a stopgap between now and when Gary Sanchez comes up. Yes to Mac.


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